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Oprah Winfrey at Weight Watchers Not Impacting Nutrisystem, Says CEO

It’s New Year resolutions time, and no doubt something high on one’s list is a focus on losing weight and feeling better.

It’s New Year resolutions time, and no doubt something high on one’s list is a focus on losing weight and feeling better. Diet plan purveyor Nutrisystem (NTRI) enters 2016 on a high note following a solid third quarter. Revenue rose 16 percent year over year, while profits items rose 44 percent. Revenue from retail outlets such as Walmart (WMT) and Kroger (KR), where Nutrisystem sells shakes and meal kits, surged 35 percent due the introduction of new products and better packaging. Despite momentum in its business, Nutrisystem does enter 2016 with a new risk: the ‘Oprah Effect.’ On October 19, legendary TV personality and longtime diet plan user Oprah Winfrey took a 10 percent stake in Nutrisystem competitor Weight Watchers (WTW). Since then, shares of Nutrisystem have fallen about 14 percent compared to a 19% percent gain for Weight Watchers, with investors wagering the star power of Winfrey will increase members for Weight Watchers at the expense of others such as Nutrisystem and Jenny Craig. So far, Nutrisystem is not buckling under the weight of Oprah. TheStreet’s Brian Sozzi reports from New York.

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